The California Department of Transportation, or Caltrans, has an ambitious goal: to triple bicycling and to double the size of walking and transit use by 2020. It is their way of maximizing and improving the effectiveness of the state\’s transportation system.
They call it the Active Transportation Program (ATP). It promotes safety among pedestrians and bicyclists while treating the environment the way it should be. Recently, this meaningful effort reached new heights as they announced an increase in their government funding. Even more so, they continued the program\’s advocacy by promoting its benefits during the Bicycle Awareness Month.
The State of the Current Transportation in America
ATP may have made numerous efforts already. However, there\’s still more to accomplish. Based on the country\’s transportation statistics, there are still a lot of cases of accidents and fatalities in the streets. In 2016 alone, almost 6,000 pedestrians died due to traffic crashes.
Because of this, the state of California pushed for this initiative to reduce these accidents and fatalities. Through the Active Transportation Program, the streets of California will hopefully transition successfully into embracing active, multi-modal transport system. To further understand this type of transportation system, this piece will dig deeper into the concept and purpose.
What is Active Transportation?
Picture a street where cars, pedestrians, and bicyclists safely and freely roam the streets of California. That\’s what the Active Transportation Program mainly promotes. The program’s goal is to have these three modes of transportation occupying the streets without worrying about getting into an accident.
From its name, Active Transportation advocates for more active modes of transportation like walking or cycling. Pushing this type of transportation system will provide benefits to the population and the environment.
It encourages people to become more physically active and improve public health while significantly reducing the emission of greenhouse gases that contribute to pollution. Therefore, it creates a community free of health hazards in the foreseeable future.
Also, increasing the ratio between bikers, pedestrians, and car owners while implementing proper regulation between these modes of transportation will improve the safety of non-motorized users. Besides that, the program makes sure that disadvantaged communities will experience its benefits, too.
Can it become the future of transportation?
As the program pushes for more support in reaching their goal, it could potentially improve the entire way of living in the state of California. Thankfully, a majority of the organizations and individuals fully support this movement. If it continues successfully, it will not be a surprise to see a cleaner, healthier, and more prosperous California in the future.
In a broader spectrum, it\’s possible to see a future where this becomes the norm. As California faces the challenges of the program one year at a time, the rest of the country and the world should follow the example of this movement. The greater effort put into advocating for this kind of program, the better it will be for the environment and for each person\’s well-being.
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